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Possible misdiagnosis?

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FionaMay

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2014
Messages
5
Hi everyone,

I saw a psychiatrist yesterday after a few appointments with a psychiatric nurse. I have been diagnosed with cyclothymia. However i disagree. I don't want to be seen as trying to diagnose myself, but i have researched a lot about bipolar as i study counselling and psychology at uni. From my understanding cyclothymia is mild hypomania and mild depression, and Bipolar 2 being hypomania but more severe depression. In my opnion, i fit bipolar 2 more so than cyclothymia. The depression is usually longer lasting than the hypomania, and if im depressed i always feel suicidal, there's no 'mild' about it. During one particularly bad episode of depression, i didnt leave the house for 2 months or more and took painkillers to fall asleep as i didn't want to be awake if it meant being depressed. Does anyone here disagree with their diagnosis? I have another appointment with my psychiatric nurse next week so i will tell him that i disagree and why. I also have really bad anxiety and insomnia, and i believe these to be associated with the mood disorder.

Is there much i can do if i dont agree with a diagnosis? Obviously im not a psychiatrist, but he only read what had been given to him by the psychiatric nurse, and didnt ask me any further questions on my mood in the appointment, so its not like hes heard first hand whats been going on for me.

Also, im not striving to be labelled or anything but the treatment options are different (none for cyclothymia apparently besides counselling), and so i find the label can be pretty crucial if it means getting the right treatment.

I'm already on antidepressants and have been before I had mood swings, when j just had the depression. He said he is not changing my medication. However I've heard they can make mood swings worse? And they're definitely not doing what they should as I've only developed mood swings since being on them.

So does anyone have a similar experience? And what will happen if I say I don't agree?

Thanks :)
 
SarahD

SarahD

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Joined
Oct 21, 2014
Messages
2,095
Location
UK
Hi Fiona

Unfortunately making a psychiatric diagnosis isn't very scientific and they often get it wrong before they get it right... If they ever get it right. Most people go through several diagnoses. Often the psychiatrist has to observe you or reports of your symptoms over time to be sure, and still may get it wrong!

If you are bipolar some antidepressants for some people can cause mania or hypomania, although when depression is bad they are sometimes still used, there are other drugs that can help with the depression part.

What I would suggest to help to get a more accurate diagnosis is to make a list of how you felt at certain times with examples of how it affected you, and how badly. So has it affected your self care, can you be bothered to wash, do you cook and shop and eat properly, has it affected your appetite, tell them about not being able to go out when you are depressed, are you sleeping ok, when you feel suicidal do you research methods or make plans, everything you can think of. Also point out that the drug you are on seems to cause hypo mania, give examples of how it affects you.

Don't dismiss the idea of counselling or therapy, sometimes it can be more helpful than the drugs which don't work for everyone.

If they still say cyclothymia ask why. ( Although seen as milder it can still be disabling and distressing and people have been suicidal with it.) If you are still unhappy you can try to get a second opinion.

Good luck.
 
H

Helena1

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Staff Member on Leave
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Oct 11, 2014
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10,575
Location
UK
where are you from? not being noisy, wanted to know as different countries have different procedures.

are you due to see anyone in the future? maybe you can see how the counseling goes and then possible add more meds or change meds later if you need to.
 
F

FionaMay

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2014
Messages
5
I'm in the UK Helena1. I wasn't supposed to have any more contact or support but I phoned up and now seeing the psychiatric nurse next week as I said I wasn't happy with the lack of support etc and will say I don't agree with the diagnosis.
 
F

FionaMay

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2014
Messages
5
Also they said I will be on the waiting list for psychotherapy for months and then have to go to lots of assessments so it won't have any support at all until then
 
R

ramboghettouk

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Founding Member
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Jan 7, 2008
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16,752
Location
london
just to say if your thinking of diagnosis the mre severe diagnoseses are seen as less likely to benefit from psychotherapy and it's less likely to be offered
 
O

Ofglen

Member
Joined
Mar 12, 2015
Messages
8
This is exactly my situation - I was told cyclothymia as my depression 'isn't severe' even though I've been hospitalised for an overdose, I've self harmed on and off for 6 years, I've not been to university in 6 weeks and I was diagnosed with severe depression 3 years ago! I just want the right diagnosis so I can be treated correctly.
 
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